The NHS: Britain's National Health Service, 1948–2020 (Shire Library) (Paperback)
A beautifully illustrated introduction to the NHS, which traces its history from its origins and establishment following the end of the Second World War, right up to the present day, and explores the ever-changing challenges of providing national healthcare in the modern world.
1948 marked a turning point in British history, for it was the year that the National Health Service began. Inaugurated by the health minister, Aneurin 'Nye' Bevan, the new nationwide system was established to provide countrywide free healthcare for every citizen at the point of use, and, as Bevan believed, would 'lift the shadow from millions of homes.' No longer would people have to fear paying for their medical care and potentially being pushed into poverty. Every aspect of medical care began to change, gradually affecting the way that the profession, including doctors, nurses, district nurses, dentists, opticians, pharmacists and hospitals practiced and operated. It also created new opportunities, enabling the scope of treatments available to grow.
This beautifully illustrated book traces the origins of the NHS, from Florence Nightingale, to the NHS beginnings in 1948 and the subsequent decades and introduces readers to the people who worked for the NHS and to the men, women and children who benefited from the new universal system. Viewed through the prism of social history, and using personal recollections, this story takes account of the debates surrounding the evolving system, and looks at the way that innovation and science have transformed healthcare since the NHS began.
About the Author
Susan Cohen is an historian with a wide interest in twentieth-century British social history. She has written and lectured widely on a variety of subjects and her books for Shire include The Midwife, The District Nurse, The Women's Institute, and Medical Services in the First World War. Susan is based in the UK.